Home water, why?
Cold sunlight, new heaven
strikes the shallows of white,
wavering tissue, new earth.
They are here,
gaining the still pool,
a million salmon bones.
Soul flood. Head down.
Study this hieroglyph, stunned.
Metal-skinned swimmers
crash from the hurtling channel
to this blinding delta,
where mission waterships spawn,
explode, and sail free.
Read the message flashing off fins;
stare, wall-eyed, while all is changed.
All things change by degrees,
entering new atmosphere.
Some break apart, freeze in darkness.
Some ignite, amaze, become graver things.
Creation, must every salmon
ever swam upstream, up consciousness,
reach the place of birth and death?
We swim in one direction.
Weep for fish?
Do I say, had you been here, Lord,
these fish would not have died?
School me. Will you gather them again?
What is my share in this fatal homing,
watery birth and death?
These swaying bones, immaculate,
still pipe the question
in the thin clear call
of the cold, cold blood.
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